Palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) is a nutritional supplement that acts as a novel anti-neuroinflammatory agent. This means that it acts to reduce inflammation in the central nervous system. It belongs to a group of endogenously produced bioactive lipids called N-acylethanolamines (NAE’s) which contribute to the regulation of pain and inflammation. There have been a number of studies where PEA has been used to treat childhood conditions such as autism (1,2), migraine (3),eczema (4) and pain (5). PEA appears to be well tolerated with a good side effect profile. It are these properties which can potentially allow it to be used as adjunctive therapy for conditions such as Paediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorder Associated with Streptococcus (PANDAS), OCD and tic disorders.
Dosing should be adjusted to take account of a childs age and weight and therefore specialist input is necessary to ensure that this agent, although it is technically a nutritional supplement, is given safely and with monitoring.